While on my way to experience some reprieve time in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado I pulled off the freeway and was lured by a sign advertising “Idaho Springs Where the Gold Rush Began”. I was desperate for a cup of liquid gold to keep me awake. This small, quaint town with a mining past is at the heart of rafting adventure, a country-style general store, and whispers of historic lore.
There was a sign directing me to “The Frothy Cup” and I could immediately feel the warm demeanor from the staff and the way they greeted me. I knew I had walked into my favorite type of hometown coffee shop. I was dumbfounded when the barista asked me after taking my order what my plans were for the day. I was indeed experiencing a rare moment to engage in discussion after a transactional experience. There were smiles, engaging eye contact and signs of true interest. I then proceeded to wait for my coffee and turned around to a presentation on the wall called the “inspiration station” – an invitation for all customers to share a joy, prayer, concern or inspiration. The instructions asked one to share an idea or take an offering that speaks to one’s heart. There were miniature wooden clips resembling cloth pins to display each jewel of a thought like a piece of delicate hanging lace. I found myself immediately drawn to the following inscription; “Love is connection, contact, encountering a person or place as it is, as we are. Love is being right here.” These words were so simple yet so profound. In a world of moment-to- moment distraction it may seem as if the most loving thing we can do is be completely in the moment. When we are with our loved ones the strongest expression of appreciation and love is to acknowledge the greatness of the moment with all of its gifts and complexity, and to be one with a person or a place. It was this momentary epiphany I needed to be reminded of. We can spend so much time naming experiences and people with favorable and unfavorable judgments instead of being with the world as it is presented to us; as it is.
“Samadhi”, a Buddhist practice challenges one’s ability to call upon a one-pointed concentration in meditation. It is the last of the eight foundations of the Noble Eight-fold Path in meditation. This method of wise intention and concentration is not easy to achieve in meditation when one’s environment is positioned for the most well-intended concentration. This difficult path allows us to be reassured of the challenge involved to taste the sweetness of life’s nectar when we find ourselves completely in the moment. In order to arrive at this place of connection we all strive for, where we are one with another and the moment, we can atone and pick ourselves up whenever we drop the ball.
There are countless ways we find ourselves dropping the ball:
- Every time we pick up a handheld device when spending time with another we drop the ball.
- When we take a picture before appreciating the beauty of the moment we drop the ball.
- When we communicate in unskillful ways via text or e-mail we drop the ball.
- The phenomena of ghosting someone and not providing clear and significant communication is a clear sign of dropping the ball.
There are numerous ways we deprive ourselves the one true gift we have been bestowed which is walking the path to be in this very moment. Our lives are screaming at us to engage for the purpose of owning an intentional life. Not only did I walk into “The Frothy Cup” and receive tasty goodness in my mug, I left with the simple goodness of a life affirmation I can strive to attain as I travel through life.